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Level Up - Issue #128


Level Up

January 23 · Issue #128 · View online

Level Up delivers a curated newsletter for leaders in tech. A project by Ideal for busy people such as Tech Leads, Engineering Managers, VPs of Engineering, CTOs and more.

Learning about Nemawashi
I came across the term Nemawashi this week and it reminded me of some lessons learned. In one of my less successful consulting engagements, I needed to present an architectural approach to a new system design. My team and I had talked with many stakeholders, our client product manager and involved the people who were going to build it. We thought we’d captured a good understanding of the situation and constraints and came up with our architecture proposal. In our first major showcase, I presented our solution expecting this to be more of a rubber stamp exercise.
Unfortunately, I was wrong.
Although we’d involved many people, we’d failed to involve an enterprise architect who was hearing our solution for the first time in the showcase and rigorously objected to our approach. Whoops!
Although I could come up with many reasons why we missed involving this enterprise architect, it did teach me to put more effort and time into searching for and involving people who either will have strong opinions about a large decision or will be affected by that large decision.
I should have spent more time on Nemawashi. Avoid what I did and spend more time on Nemawashi to build buy-in and lead change.
If you’re looking for further resources on introducing change or influencing, my two favourite books are Fearless Change and More Fearless Change. Both are a catalogue of patterns on leading successful change.
Enjoy this week’s newsletter and be sure to pass it on to a friend or colleague.
Want to level up your technical leadership skills? New 2022 dates for “Shortcut to Tech Leadership” are now available, or take a self-paced course at the

Don't forget about Nemawashi, like I did
Don't forget about Nemawashi, like I did
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Use More 1-1-1s
Coaching as a learning reinforcement method
Know how your org works (or how to become a more effective engineer)
Join an online workshop (Feb 9/10, Mar 16/17) to level up your technical leadership skills. Click the banner to find out more.
Join an online workshop (Feb 9/10, Mar 16/17) to level up your technical leadership skills. Click the banner to find out more.
Amazon’s DynamoDB — 10 years later
Designing WhatsApp
The Myth of Decentralization and Lies about Web 2.0
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Organisation & Processes
The Security Obstructionism (SecObs) Market
Let service teams own the service operations instead of the SRE
Crafting leadership teams for fast, effective information flow
Tweets of the Week
A great thread below that shows how complex simple, secure software at scale can be 👇
Mitchell Cohen
"How hard can a password manager really be?" Well, B2B support, compliance, infrastructure, integrations, SecOps, are all more specialized when dealing with the incredibly sensitive data people keep and share in @1Password. But let's just talk about my favourite part, the apps.
Another great thread about leadership 👇
David Morris
People are complicated.

Leading them isn't.

A simple plan for leading well: 🧵
Thanks for making it this far! 🤗
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Patrick Kua, Postfach 58 04 40, 10314, Berlin, Germany